Reinhold Niebuhr: His Religious, Social, and Political Thought - Vol. 2

Reinhold Niebuhr: His Religious, Social, and Political Thought - Vol. 2

Reinhold Niebuhr: His Religious, Social, and Political Thought - Vol. 2

Reinhold Niebuhr: His Religious, Social, and Political Thought - Vol. 2

Excerpt

As we enter the second half of the twentieth century, religion and theology are less likely to be neglected by thinking men. Whatever may be the causes of the present-day return to religion, the fact remains that religious thinking has again become intellectually respectable. As against the climate of a generation and more ago — when the notion of a "Christian intellectual" was almost a contradiction in terms — we now see religiously minded men — motivated in their thinking by basic religious and theological assumptions — taking a more and more prominent and commanding place in the world of thought.

The Library of Living Theology is dedicated to the furthering and the clarification of this phenomenon of our times. Granted that religion and theology are again in the forefront of thought and life, and that they are once more "respectable," which religion is best, which theology is the most valid? There is much vigorous discussion, but little general agreement. Certain trends may be seen — for example, the swing away from humanism and liberalism — but these are only straws in the wind, and in any case prove nothing about validity. Neither the good nor the true can be derived from the "is."

In 1939 Professor Paul Arthur Schilpp, of Northwestern University, set out to clarify the issues in contemporary philosophy through a series of books entitled The Library of Living Philosophers. His idea was original and unique: to devote each volume in the series to the thinking of a single living philosopher, and to include in each (1) an intellectual autobiography; (2) essays on different aspects of the man's work, written by leading scholars; (3) a "reply to his critics" by the philosopher himself; and (4) a complete bibliography of . . .

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